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Mossad chief admits to having ‘prestigious’ assassination list

The file photo shows Yossi Cohen, the director of the Israeli spy agency Mossad, right, sitting next to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. (By AFP)

Yossi Cohen, who is the director of the Israeli spy agency Mossad, has acknowledged having a “prestigious” assassination list at his disposal, claiming that targeting foreign influential figures, including Iran’s Major General Qassem Soleimani, is “not impossible.”

“With all due respect to his bluster, he hasn’t necessarily committed the mistake yet that would place him on the prestigious list of Mossad’s assassination targets,” Cohen said in reference to General Soleimani, a globally famous Iranian defense strategist who played a key role in the counterterrorism operations that led to the collapse of the Daesh Takfiri terrorist group in Iraq and Syria.

The Times of Israel published the remarks on October 11.

“He knows very well that his assassination is not impossible. His actions are identified and felt everywhere… There’s no doubt the infrastructure he built presents a serious challenge for Israel,” Cohen argued.

The New York Times had earlier revealed a March 2017 meeting in the Saudi capital, Riyadh, in which top Saudi intelligence officials close to Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman asked a small group of businessmen last year about using private companies to assassinate Iranian enemies of the kingdom.

Last week, the intelligence unit of Iran’s Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) said it had thwarted an Arab-Israeli plot to assassinate General Soleimani, who commands the IRGC’s Quds Force, in the southeastern Iranian province of Kerman.

Soleimani successfully led Iranian military advisers backing the national armies of Syria and Iraq in their fight against terrorist groups, many of which had the backing of the Israeli regime and certain Persian Gulf Arab regimes.

Soleimani also topped Foreign Policy (FP)’s 2019 list of Global Thinkers in the defense and security field.

Cohen’s remarks come after a senior Israeli minister boasted that Israel was the only entity “in the world killing Iranians” with impunity. He said that only a minority of the Israeli regime’s bombing raids on Iranian targets in Syria had been publicly acknowledged.

“We strike the Iranians hundreds of times in Syria. Sometimes we acknowledge it and sometimes foreign reports reveal it,” Tzachi Hanegbi,  the Israeli regional cooperation minister, told Israel’s public broadcaster Kan radio in July.

In response, Iran’s Press TV at the time tweeted: “This is how Israelis are freely and proudly talking about killing Iranians! Just imagine what would happen if it was the other way around!”

The Israeli regime has a dark history of hiring hit men to assassinate nuclear scientists and intellectuals in Iran.

Four Iranian nuclear scientists were assassinated by the Israeli regime between 2010 and 2012. According to Western intelligence agencies, the acts of terror were carried out by Israeli agents, an accusation Israeli officials never denied.

Elsewhere in his remarks, Cohen, who is a potential political successor to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, claimed Israel could eliminate the secretary general of the Lebanese resistance movement Hezbollah, Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah.

He said Nasrallah "knows we have the option of eliminating him."

Earlier this month, Soleimani, gave an insight to his key role during Israel’s 33-War on Lebanon in 2006. 

According to a 629-page Winograd Report by the Israeli regime itself, Hezbollah resistance fighters involved in defending Lebanon against the Israeli war alongside the national army defeated the enemy and Tel Aviv was compelled to withdraw without having achieved any of its objectives.

Cohen also commented on the killings of officials from Palestinian resistance movement Hamas in hits by Israel around the world in recent years, saying that the Tel Aviv regime targets Hamas officials abroad "without hesitation."

Political observers maintain that an unconditional support by the United States and some other Western countries have emboldened Israel to violate international law by committing secret killings in keeping with its expansionist agenda in the region.

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